Scientists from the Agharkar Analysis Institute in Pune have just lately found two new species of pipeworts within the Western Ghats of Maharashtra and Karnataka, the Division of Science and Know-how (DST) mentioned on Sunday.

The species reported from Sindhudurg district of Maharashtra has been named Eriocaulon parvicephalum (as a consequence of its minute inflorescence dimension), and the opposite reported from Kumta, Karnataka is named Eriocaulon karaavalense (named after Karaavali, Coastal Karnataka area), it mentioned.

Pipeworts (Eriocaulon) is a plant group which completes its life cycle inside a small interval throughout monsoon. It displays nice variety within the Western Ghats.

Round 111 species of pipeworts are present in India. Most of those are reported from the Western Ghats and the japanese Himalayas, and round 70 per cent of them are endemic to the nation.

“One species, Eriocaulon cinereum, is well-known for its anti-cancerous, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and astringent properties. E. quinquangulare is used towards liver illnesses. E. madayiparense is an anti-bacterial from Kerala.

“The medicinal properties of the newly found species are but to be explored,” the DST mentioned.

The brand new species had been found whereas exploring the biodiversity of the Western Ghats.

The scientists needed to hint the evolutionary historical past of the genus Eriocaulon and made intensive efforts to gather as many species as potential from India, particularly from the Western Ghats, the DST mentioned.

“Whereas critically inspecting our assortment, we got here throughout two accessions, which confirmed totally different floral characters than earlier identified species. Therefore, we studied morphology and its DNA to substantiate the novelty,” mentioned Ritesh Kumar Choudhary, the lead writer of a research on the brand new species.

The research was printed in ‘Phytotaxa’ and ‘Annales Botanici Fennici’ journals, the DST mentioned.

Identification of the species belonging to Eriocaulon could be very tough as all of them look related, which is why the genus is also known as a ‘Taxonomist’s nightmare’.

Its tiny flowers and seeds make it tough to differentiate between totally different species, Choudhary identified.

Choudhary’s PhD pupil Ashwini Darshetkar mentioned, “Future research will deal with elucidating the evolutionary historical past of the genus in India. An intensive investigation of the phylogenetic relationship between all Indian species would additionally assist in prioritising the conservation of threatened species in India.” “We’re additionally making an attempt to develop DNA barcodes, which is able to allow us to determine the species with only a portion of the leaf,” he mentioned.

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